Tallgrass and The Lonely Heartstring Band make Pagosa debut at Folk ‘N Bluegrass

Tallgrass Tallgrass

By Crista Munro

Special to The PREVIEW

This year’s 11th annual Pagosa Folk ‘N Bluegrass festival will take place June 3, 4 and 5 on Reservoir Hill right here in downtown Pagosa Springs.

The event attracts hundreds of people from around Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and beyond to hear some of today’s most talented acoustic and roots-based musicians in one of the most beautiful festival venues on the planet.

This year’s outstanding musical lineup includes Eileen Ivers, Aoife O’Donovan, Caravan of Thieves, Rob Ickes and Trey Hensley, Tony Furtado, the Jon Stickley Trio, The Railsplitters, The Lil’ Smokies, Melody Walker and Jacob Groopman, Steep Ravine, Finnders and Youngberg, The Robin Davis Duo and this week’s featured artists: Tallgrass and The Lonely Heartstring Band.

The Lonely Heartstring Band

Nourished by deep roots in the expansive canon of traditional American music, The Lonely Heartstring Band embodies the modern American condition — an understanding and reverence for the past that informs a push into the future. This multi-talented group of musicians is a classic bluegrass quintet — always far greater than the sum of its parts.

Combining soulful instrumental virtuosity with soaring three-part harmonies, their growing repertoire of original songs and compositions showcases not only their considerable talents, but a dedication to meaningful roots-conscious music.

Since their beginnings in 2012, The Lonely Heartstring Band has been on the rise and shows no sign of slowing down. With their 2015 International Bluegrass Music Association Momentum Award and the imminent release of their debut full-length album on the legendary Rounder Records label, there is every reason to hope that they are at the front edge of a significant career.

Already, the Heartstrings have generated a devoted following of music-lovers across North America, performing and headlining at major music festivals and historic venues from Western Canada to California, from Kentucky to New Hampshire. Whether it’s a festival stage, theater or intimate listening room, The Lonely Heartstring Band always delivers a dynamic, diverse and heartfelt performance. Over the last three years of touring, the band has crafted shows that generate a genuine connection and bring crowds to their feet.

Eager to hit the road again in 2016, The Lonely Heartstring Band will continue bringing thoughtful, energetic and memorable performances to audiences across the country and around the world and will bookend their summer tour right here in Pagosa Springs, performing at both Pagosa Folk ‘N Bluegrass in June and the Four Corners Folk Festival over Labor Day weekend. The guys will perform one main stage set at Folk ‘N Bluegrass on Sunday, June 5, at 1:45 p.m.


Raised by wolves, taught by squirrels, enemy of the owl — Tallgrass sings songs of happiness and sorrow.

This trio brings gravel-road vocals, quick-picked guitar and a rhythm section with stomping ground sound. While they have a banjo, it’s not bluegrass. Influenced by old-timey sounds while at the same time digging through new-timey notes, they write and perform homemade auditory originals: three-part harmonies backed by drums, bass, guitar and banjo sit on music’s front porch, ready to play.

Brothers Adam and Austin Morford formed Tallgrass with longtime friend Matt Skinner during May of 2011. Their debut album, “God, Sin, Whiskey and Women,” was released in the summer of 2012. Their sophomore album, “Better Than Medicine,” was released in early February 2014 and they’re currently finishing their third album, “Laughing.”

The band will take the Reservoir Hill stage on Saturday, June 4, at 1 p.m.

FolkWest is still seeking a few more volunteers to round out this year’s crew. In exchange for working two four-hour shifts, festival volunteers receive admission to the festival for all three days. Admission to FolkWest festivals is always free for kids 12 and under when accompanied by an adult.

Pagosa Folk ‘N Bluegrass is supported in part by a matching grant from Colorado Creative Industries. Additional information about the festival, including schedule, ticketing and more, can be found at www.folkwest.com.

Biography content courtesy of Tallgrass and The Lonely Heartstring Band.